|The Fondation Chirac along with Louis Michel, Belgian Minister of State and Member of the European Parliament, are organizing a high-level conference that will take place during the European Development Days, on Tuesday, December 7, 2010 in Brussels.|
What is the focus of the “Falsified medicines, a challenge to the EU” conference, organizes as part of the European Development Days (EDD)?
When President Jacques Chirac spoke of his intention to organize a high-level conference in Brussels, as a continuation of the Cotonou Declaration, I immediately thought that this conference should be held as part of the EDD, the development equivalent of Davos that brings together over 5,000 participatns every year.
This political forum is an opportunity to discuss critical issues of development policy at the highest lever. It targets all professionals working in the field of development.
The Conference’s opening talk on “Falsified medicines, a challenge for the EU” will be part of the three formal plenary sessions to be held on the morning of December 7. It will inventory health governance and access to quality medicines. The afternoon will be reserved for panel discussions.
What are you expectations for this conference?
Access to counterfeit drugs is a moral issue, an ethical problem that undermines the credibility and effectiveness of health systems. It should challenge the conscience of political leaders around the world.
What is fascinating about the European Development Days is this common consciousness that unites all those who work daily to promote a fairer and better world.
These two events, organized as part of the EDD, will be carried to newer heights by the latter. I am convinced that European institutions will pursue an active policy to stop this unacceptable perversion.
As for me, I hope that Parliament appropriates the subject by passing a resolution, relayed by the Euromed Parliamentary Assembly and ACP-EU, to exert more influence over member states and partner countries.
More specifically, to what extent can the EU contribute to encouraging the efforts of developing countries to fight against the trafficking of falsified medicines and to render their distribution channels safer?
At the Commission, the draft directive banning notably the “repackaging” of falsified or expired drugs should adopted under Belgian Presidency.
At the European Parliament, during the Development Commission, as part of the Millennium Development Goals Progress Report, I argued for improved health care systems in developing countris. We have proposed increased development spending on health, increased World Health Fund contributions, and concentrating our efforts on improving maternal health and fighting infant mortality.
Belgian Minister of State and Member of the European Parliament
To establish multidisciplinary committees to fight against falsified medicines
Focused governance must be encouraged in countries affected by the sourge of falsified medicines. The establishment of multidisciplinary committees to fight against falsified medicines, capable of guiding governmental decisions is among the Fondation Chirac’s many proposals.
Des progrès structurels permettraient aux pays de se doter d’une base juridique adaptée aux besoins. Une approche sous-régionale dépassant le simple cadre national est indispensable, afin de mutualiser les financements et les moyens d’agir pour contrôler le circuit du médicament dans les pays à ressources limitées.
The development of a legally binding framework of international scope, to prevent the production and trade of falsified medicines, must become the repressive side of policies targeting prevention and access to health: mutualized health care, encouraging the local manufacture of health products, drug quality control laboratories…
– The World Health Organization has been working on this issue since 2006 and has pledged in May 2010 to give governments a significant role in its studies.
– On September 7, 2006, the European Parliament passed a resolution on counterfeit drugs, at the initiative of the Development Committee (P6_TA-PROV(2006)0351)
– Several member states of the International Organization of Francophonie will submit a resolution on falsified medication at the Francophonie Summit in Montreux on October 22, 2010
– The Council of Europes Medicrime Convention, which criminalizes “counterfeit health products”, will be signed in March 2011.
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 7, 2010 IN BRUSSELS